Description: India House
Date Listed: 16 January 1981
English Heritage Building ID: 208532
OS Grid Reference: TQ3067680970
OS Grid Coordinates: 530676, 180970
Latitude/Longitude: 51.5126, -0.1182
TQ 3080 NE CITY OF WESTMINSTER ALDWYCH, WC2
73/8 (South side)
16.1.81 India House
High Commission. 1928-30 by Sir Herbert Baker and A.T. Scott. Portland
ashlar above grey granite 2 storey podium (on steel frame); red pantile
roof. Monumental, shallowly modelled elevations with relatively small
scale sculptural and decorative details of Indian derivation. 7 storeys
and dormered mansard. 9 windows wide, the front following convex curve of
Aldwych. Central entrance of black marble with heavy bracketed cornice
supporting 2 free standing "Ashokan" columns with stylised elephant bases
and lioness finials, flanking semicircular arched window with Ashokan lion
keystone; wooden door with Indian jaali work and jaali's flanking. Ground
floor windows arcaded. Windows with moulded segmental arched heads on 1st,
3rd and 5th floors, those on 2nd floor with segmental arched heads and
sills, flat arched 4th floor windows. The 3rd floor has 2 symmetrically
placed aediculed windows. Band courses above ground 1st and 2nd floors,
pierced work balcony in front of 6th floor above coved cornice. Iron
balcony to 5th floor. Indian motifs over front including animal head
brackets, tondi and frieze above 2nd floor. Royal Arms flank central 5th
floor window. Return to Montreal Place of 7 bays with 3 bay balcony and
aediculed window above. Principal interior spaces dressed in red "Agra"
sandstone; the entrance hall domed, the 1st floor oculus-gallery with
pierced work balustrade carried on vaults with murals executed by Indian
artists, who likewise frescoed the dome which has a frosted glass lantern
stage; bronze chandelier. Indian murals in main reception rooms as well.
Baker, who had made a point at New Delhi of using Indian artists for the
Secretariats murals, arranged for them to be sent to London and Rome for
special fresco training for the India House decorations.
Listing NGR: TQ3067680970
This text is a legacy record and has not been updated since the building was originally listed. Details of the building may have changed in the intervening time. You should not rely on this listing as an accurate description of the building.
Source: English Heritage
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.